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Weekly Report - 12 August 2021 (WR-21-32)

NICARAGUA: Main opposition party excluded from elections

“The final blow against Nicaragua’s prospects for a free and fair election”. This was the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s response to the decision by Nicaragua’s electoral authorities (CSE) to cancel the legal status of opposition party Ciudadanos por la Libertad (CxL) ahead of the 7 November general elections. Described by Blinken as Nicaragua’s “last genuine opposition party”, CxL had headed up the Alianza Ciudadanos por la Libertad (ACL), the main opposition alliance hoping to compete in the election in which President Daniel Ortega is seeking a further term for the Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional (FSLN). The CSE’s decision, which follows the arrest of 32 opposition figures, including various presidential candidates, and other moves targeting the opposition, has sparked further international condemnation, while the other main opposition grouping, Coalición Nacional (CN), is now urging the public to reject the election altogether.

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